Broiler Breeder Houses

Sunnylands Farm, Devon

Broiler Breeder Houses, Devon

In early 2019 the Frankpitt family, broiler breeder farmers in the Southwest, put forward the idea of bio-filtration to meet the requirements set out during the planning phase for four new houses. They contacted draperGROUP to see if the project was technically feasible, and after several different concepts were extensively researched and considered, the most efficient and effective ventilation and bio-filter design were agreed upon, with Acorus Rural Property Services then assisting with the successful planning application.

Powell & Co Construction was chosen to see how the bio-filter could be best integrated into their house design. The collective objective for this project was to provide a construction suitable to meet the environmental requirements set out during the planning phase; this being the concept of the bio-filter, running almost the length of the main structure, serving four individual bird areas.  Alongside these primary design features, we also had to consider the practicalities involved with ongoing maintenance and health and safety.

In spring 2022 the construction of four broiler breeder houses was completed for the Frankpitt family at Sunnylands Farm in Devon. Another 1st for Powell & Co Construction in the Southwest, the site features some of the latest design features for the family business that trades as Satinsilk.

Each breeder house measures 54m x 28m with a corridor connecting, in an “H” configuration, the two steel frame clear span sections.  The sides of the houses are Juniper Green and the roof Van Dyke Brown, with timber cladding on the front gable end.  The site will house 36,000 female birds and 3,600 male birds with a stocking density of 6 female birds per metre square and a nest space of 80 females per metre square.

The site is the first commercial breeder farm to feature an exhaust air to biofiltration system.  A unique biofiltration construction of 43m x 5m per house has been incorporated to provide the four breeder houses with wood chip which is kept moist with an irrigation system as their bio-filter; the wood chip is inoculated so that microbial action reduces odour and ammonia. The bio-filter works by consuming the volatile organic compounds (VOC) that cause odour.  The bio-filters are made up of a bed of organic materials, such as wood chip, which absorb a variety of the odorous and ammonia into a biofilm.  They are biodegraded by microorganisms into simpler and less toxic compounds like carbon dioxide, water, nutrients and salts and use the energy and nutrients to grow and reproduce.

Special Features

  • Four 54m x 28m breeder houses with a connecting corridor
  • Steel mesh structure for wet bark bio-filter, elevated to 2.78m being 43m x 5m per house
  • Central link corridor (66m x 8.5m) containing control rooms, packing facility, offices, toilets, showers and canteen
  • Two 4m x 3m sheds, covered by canopies
  • Timber cladding on the front gable end
  • Draper AVI-AIR ventilation
  • Fienhage nests & feeders
  • Landmeco male feeders
  • Lubing egg conveyors
  • Prinzen grader and packer

Why Powells?

“To meet the environmental requirements set out during the planning phase we worked closely with draperGroup and Powell & Co Construction to find a solution for the construction project.  We have been delighted with the whole process which has enabled us to further expand our business.  Our four new broiler breeder units are a credit to the design and construction teams.  To be the first commercial breeder farm to have installed an exhaust air to biofiltration system is something we are proud of.  The site is a showcase for other poultry farmers considering the biofiltration system we have installed.” Jeremy Frankpitt, Devon.


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